SINGAPORE (Jan 23): The manager of Mapletree Industrial Trust (MIT) has announced a distribution per unit (DPU) of 2.88 cents for the 3Q ended December, from 2.83 cents a year ago.

This includes an advanced distribution of 0.99 cent per unit for the period from Oct 1 to Nov 1, which was paid on Nov 28, 2017. The DPU for the enlarged units in issue for the remaining period from Nov 2 to Dec 31 was 1.89 cents per unit.

Gross revenue for 3Q17/18 rose 8.3% to $91.5 million, from $84.5 million a year ago.

The improvement was due to revenue contribution from MIT’s build-to-suit project for HP Singapore, partially offset by lower portfolio occupancy.

Property operating expenses fell 2.0% to $20.6 million, mainly attributed to lower property maintenance expenses, utilities and marketing commission, partially offset by higher property taxes.

Consequently, net property income (NPI) grew 11.7% to $70.9 million in 3Q17/18, from $63.4 million a year ago.

Portfolio occupancy rate improved marginally to 90.5% in 3Q17/18, from 90.4% in the preceding quarter, due to higher occupancy of the US portfolio.

As at end December, cash and cash equivalents stood at $47.6 million.

“The completion of our first overseas acquisition of 14 data centres in US is in line with the expansion of MIT’s investment strategy and broadens our presence in the growing data centre sector,” says Tham Kuo Wei, CEO of the manager.

See: Mapletree Industrial Trust in JV to acquire 14 data centres in US for $1.02 bil

“The acquisition portfolio with long leases on freehold land will strengthen MIT portfolio and enhance the stability of returns to unitholders,” Tham adds.

Looking ahead, the manager says the continued supply of competing industrial space is expected to exert pressure on both occupancy and rental rates, and adds that it will continue to focus on tenant retention to maintain a stable portfolio occupancy.

Units of MIT closed 5 cents lower at $2.07 on Tuesday.